Правила сложения рэнга, изложенные в трактатах Сё:хаку «Свод правил рэнга» (Рэнга синсики, 1501) и Синкэй «Шёпот» (Сасамэгото, 1463–1464)
In medieval Japan, poetry was composed strictly according to certain rules and conventions, which were recorded mostly in the rulebooks (shikimoku 式目) and poetic treatises (rengaron 連歌論). In both of these kinds of works, the most important rules and norms were articulated. After several writings on the poetry of renga (“linked verses” 連歌) were created by prominent poets Fujuwara no Teika, Ichijyō Kanera etc (XIII c.), who considered renga to be just a literary play, a Buddist monk Shōhaku composed the most important and serious compendium of the rules of renga, “The New Rules of Renga” (連歌新式 Renga shinshiki, 1501), based on the works of several generations of poets, for the most popular poetic form hakuin renga (100 stanzas renga 百印連歌). The work by Shōhaku, designed for the poets and judges at poetic tournaments, deals mostly with the vocabulary of renga, usage, poetic technique, double meanings of words, traditional allusions. It is a practical guide to the composition of renga. One more profound work on poetics written in medieval Japan is a treatise by another Buddist monk and poet Shinkei, titled “Whisper” (ささめごと Sasamegoto, 1463–1464). Shinkei, on the contrary, is far from explaining rules, considering renga to be a part of the whole medieval poetic tradition. The treatise is written in the form of a vague dialogue between a sage, who comprehends all the secrets of poetry, and a provincial amateur of renga, who expresses the popular view on renga as a play and reduces this genre to the earthly level. The statements of Shinkei are made in metaphorical mode, with renga in his works becoming a serious art of the Muromachi era (1392–1568) and a significant part of Japanese poetry in general.